Need to Hire a Production Assistant? Here’s What you Need to Know
Hiring a production assistant is much like hiring for any entry-level position. There are a TON of applications to sift through, you’ll most likely go through several applicants before finding the right one, and the entire process can be frustrating if you’re not prepared!
But, filling the role of production assistant, though the lowest rank on the film set, is vital to the success of your film production. Here’s what you need to know before you hire the next “green” production assistant for your film project.
It’s Not Rocket Science, but Passion is Required
Production assistant is the first, foot in the door role for many who develop long-lasting careers in filmmaking. While it’s not Rocket Science, it’s important that you hire a production assistant that has a passion for film.
While it’s an entry-level position, it’s a very demanding position. Seemingly everyone on the set will have a demand or desire for the PA and this will either a) make the PA instantly annoyed and ready to walk off the set or b) make the PA aim to please in an effort to excel further in their role in film.
Hire someone that’s energetic, a people person, and with a strong desire to learn. Not sure if your applicant has what it takes?
Ask the following question:
Why Do You Want to Be a Production Assistant?
When you ask, you should be looking for an answer that that spells out their desire to be a part of the film crew team.
An answer that touches on a personal reference toward film, a desire to please, and maybe something relative to being a creative team player will exceed expectations in this phase of the hiring process.
Prepare to Explain Expectations
Hiring a production assistant is like hiring a jack of all trades. They need to be able to work in all aspects of the film, under all sorts of different temperatures and climates and for long hours — all without complaining.
Production assistants are responsible for handling multiple tasks at a time and they should be prepared to deliver top quality support to their team regardless of time or scenario.
Make sure you let the applicants for production assistant know that they will be required to work in rain, sleet, snow, hail, and occasional sunny conditions.
Now is also a good time to explain the hierarchy of management associated with the Production Assistant role. As an entry-level position, the Production Assistant will answer to virtual everyone on the crew at some point in the day.
Directly the Production Assistant should be prepared to make people smile — and if that means handing out umbrellas, offering cold drinks, or delivering headphones as needed — that’s what should be done!
Test their Skills — Immediately
Great production assistants are ready to start working right away — so why not test their skill set?
When you’re hiring a production assistant, the best way to determine whether or not they’re going to fit in with your film crew is to put them right to work and begin testing their skills. Multitasking is the biggest test that should take place.
Put the Production Assistant to work and immediate deliver a handful of tasks – task them with finding items for tomorrow’s shoot overnight, task them with delivering instructions to drivers on location, and have them check on everyone on set to ensure all of the extras and upcoming scenes are ready to go.
Fill their plate the first day and see how they do — most will either make it or they’ll leave right away and honestly, that’s what you want! Stick it out, or get out!
Need help hiring a production assistant? Give Beverly Boy Productions a call. Our camera crews have worked worldwide for more than two decades and we’ve got plenty of connections with local Production assistants that can assist you with your upcoming film project. There’s a lot to do — don’t waste any more time — call today!